A serious injury or illness may leave you unable to work, but qualifying for government benefits in Albany is more complicated than you might think. For example, people with severe, debilitating conditions are regularly turned down for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits, even if they worked and paid into the Social Security system for years. An Albany Social Security disability lawyer can help.
At John Foy & Associates, our goal is to help ill and injured people get the money they need. We will assemble the documents and present a strong case, whether it’s your first application or an appeal. Call us and get your free consultation today.
Why Should I Hire a Social Security Disability Attorney in Albany, GA?
You may wonder, what exactly do our social security disability lawyers do? Our Albany Social Security disability lawyers can help you get the benefits you deserve in several ways:
- Representing you throughout the entire appeals process
- Ensuring that your application doesn’t have any gaps and has all the information correctly filled out
- Helping you gather evidence and essential records that prove your condition or disability
- Handling all of the paperwork and communication between you and the Social Security Administration (SSA)
- Helping you build a strong case for your appeal or your application for SSD benefits
Even though having an Albany Social Security disability lawyer isn’t a hard requirement, that doesn’t mean you should go without one. Without a strong lawyer by your side, you risk falling through the cracks again and missing out on months of benefits.
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How does Social Security Disability Work in Albany, GA?
The federal Social Security Act was created to prevent people from losing their means of support when they cannot work. When you work, Social Security taxes get deducted from your paycheck.
The government then uses these Social Security taxes to make monthly Social Security payments to retired people and people who can’t work anymore because of a medical condition. So SSD can help you maintain financial stability even though you can no longer hold a job. The basics of SSD are simple:
- You have already paid for these benefits through paycheck deductions during your working life. Accepting SSD payments is the same as drawing Social Security after you retire.
- You can qualify with any disability that keeps you from working. If you were injured, it doesn’t matter whether the injury happened on the job or off.
- To be eligible for SSD, you must have worked and paid Social Security taxes regularly over the past 10 years, but this doesn’t mean you must have always worked full-time. Some people qualify even though they worked part-time or had employment gaps, and you may also be eligible for benefits if your income is low enough.
The SSA decides SSD applications. We have seen many applications in Albany, GA, rejected even though the applicant had a long work history and legitimate disability. To prevent this from happening to you, it’s crucial to get a Social Security disability lawyer in Albany to work on your claim as soon as you can.
What Will Qualify Me for SSD Benefits in Albany, GA?
If you have held a job but can’t work anymore because of an injury or health condition, you are likely to qualify for SSD. However, before you can begin collecting benefits, you must convince the SSA that you are eligible. This means you must show them proof that:
- You have a doctor’s diagnosis of your medical condition.
- Your condition is terminal or will last for over a year.
- Because of your condition, you can’t continue to do your job.
- You also cannot hold other jobs that you might be qualified for.
- You have worked long enough to earn enough Social Security “work credits” to qualify for benefits.
- You have accumulated at least 20 work credits in the past 10 years.
- You have a low income. You only need to prove this if you don’t have enough work credits.
If you have a disability and can’t work, you can probably meet these conditions. But it can be hard to collect the documents the SSA is looking for and present them in a way that will convince the SSA to approve your claim.
What Can Get Me Denied for SSD Benefits?
You can get denied SSD benefits under several grounds:
- You applied too many times or had too many appeals.
- Your medical condition isn’t severe enough by the SSA to warrant SSD disability benefits.
- You haven’t taken proactive measures to ensure you stay healthy.
- You have a serious drug or alcohol addiction.
- You improperly filed your application or provided the wrong information.
Regardless of how your application for SSD benefits gets denied, there’s always another option. Unfortunately, the SSA doesn’t make the appeals or application process easy for the average person. There are many laws, rules, regulations, and legal jargon that can waste time and cause you financial strain.
What Kinds of Conditions Are Considered Disabilities for SSD?
If you can no longer work because of your health, you should be able to qualify for SSD. However, when it processes applications, the SSA treats some conditions differently than others. A few very serious illnesses, such as terminal cancers and kidney failure, automatically qualify as disabilities.
For most conditions, though, eligibility isn’t as clear-cut. The SSA has a long list of conditions that might potentially qualify as disabilities, but you will have to prove that in your case, the condition is serious enough to leave you unable to work. The SSA’s list of “disabling conditions” includes:
- Severe heart conditions, such as heart failure
- Blindness and low vision
- Irritable bowel syndrome
- Mental health disorders, including severe depression
- Severe, ongoing back pain
- Severe asthma and other chronic respiratory problems
There are hundreds of conditions that can qualify. The SSA has a complete list of impairments that you can double-check with to ensure your condition qualifies. But even if your condition is not on the SSA’s list, you may still be entitled to SSD benefits. However, you may have to present even more evidence to convince the SSA that your health condition counts as a disability that has kept you from working.
Is It True that I Can File an Appeal If My SSD Application Got Denied?
Yes. You shouldn’t give up if your SSD application gets denied. Denials are widespread, and the appeals process gives you a second chance to get benefits. In fact, we often find that it is easier to win approval on appeal than with an initial application.
When filing an appeal, it is important to pay attention to why the application was denied and submit documentation that addresses those issues. If necessary, you can appeal an SSD decision more than once. At some point, your case will get heard by a judge instead of a government employee.
A judge may understand the law more thoroughly and may be more willing to grant benefits if your case is controversial or doesn’t fit the typical mold. However, these appeals do take time, and while you are waiting, you will not receive benefits. This is why we believe it is vital to get a Social Security disability attorney in Albany on your side sooner rather than later.
We Charge No Fees Upfront
We never charge our clients with any legal fees upfront. We also don’t charge for any hidden fees or use shady business practices. Our goal is to help you get the money you need. The last thing we want is to be another source of financial stress in your life. If we can’t help you get your SSD benefits, you owe us nothing in return for our services.
Talk to an Albany Social Security Disability Attorney for Free
At John Foy & Associates, we’ve seen what a difference it makes when our clients begin receiving the SSD benefits they so desperately need. So let us help you put together a strong case so you can get the financial help you need as soon as possible. Call us or fill out the form to your right and get your free consultation today.